RWE axes £4bn UK wind power project

The owner of energy firm npower has pulled out of its plans to build a wind farm off the north Devon coast. Developer RWE Innogy said the 240-turbine Atlantic Array […]

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By Priyanka Shrestha

The owner of energy firm npower has pulled out of its plans to build a wind farm off the north Devon coast.

Developer RWE Innogy said the 240-turbine Atlantic Array project is being shelved due to “technical challenges making the project uneconomic at current time” and is “not viable” to continue.

The wind farm in the Bristol Channel Zone would have had the capacity to generate up to 1,200MW of renewable energy – enough to power up to 900,000 homes.

The project, which RWE said would help Britain meet its renewable energy targets and create thousands of jobs, has not yet had the go-ahead. It had attracted criticism, with environmentalists worried about the impact on marine wildlife in the Bristol Channel.

Paul Cowling, Director of Offshore Wind at RWE Innogy said: “This is not a decision we have taken lightly, however given the technological challenges and market conditions, now is not the right time for RWE to continue to progress with this project.

“We will continue to focus on the other less technically challenging offshore projects within our extensive offshore pipeline of up to 5.2GW.”

DECC said the decision to not proceed with the development “is a matter for RWE”.

A spokesperson added: “It was made on technical grounds and reflects the many complex challenges of constructing offshore wind farms in some areas. The UK still expects to deploy significant amounts of offshore wind by 2020 and we remain well placed to meet our 2020 renewable energy target.”

The UK aims to generate 15% of its energy from renewable sources by 2020.